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In the past twenty years hundreds of infants and young children have died after being left in vehicles, usually by accident. When turning the vehicle off, drivers of the Venza are reminded to check the back seat if they opened the rear door before starting out. The Encore doesn’t offer a back seat reminder.
The Venza has standard Pre-Collision System, which use forward mounted sensors to warn the driver of a possible collision ahead. If the driver doesn’t react and the system determines a collision is imminent, it automatically applies the brakes at full-force in order to reduce the force of the crash or avoid it altogether. The Encore offers an available collision warning system without the automated brake feature that would prevent or reduce the collision if the driver fails to react.
The Venza has a standard Secondary Collision Brake, which automatically applies the brakes in the event of a crash to help prevent secondary collisions and prevent further injuries. The Encore doesn’t offer a post collision braking system: in the event of a collision that triggers the airbags, more collisions are possible without the protection of airbags that may have already deployed.
Over 200 people are killed each year when backed over by motor vehicles. The Venza XLE/Limited has standard Rear Automated Braking that uses rear sensors to monitor and automatically apply the brakes to prevent a rear collision. The Encore doesn’t offer backup collision prevention brakes.
To provide maximum traction and stability on all roads, All-Wheel Drive is standard on the Venza. But it costs extra on the Encore.
The Venza Limited has a standard Bird’s Eye View Monitor to allow the driver to see objects all around the vehicle on a screen. The Encore only offers a rear monitor and front and rear parking sensors that beep or flash a light. That doesn’t help with obstacles to the sides.
The Venza’s driver alert monitor detects an inattentive driver then sounds a warning and suggests a break. According to the NHTSA, drivers who fall asleep cause about 100,000 crashes and 1500 deaths a year. The Encore doesn’t offer a driver alert monitor.
Both the Venza and the Encore have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, driver knee airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, height adjustable front shoulder belts, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, daytime running lights and rearview cameras.
The Toyota Venza weighs 489 to 676 pounds more than the Buick Encore. The NHTSA advises that heavier vehicles are much safer in collisions than their significantly lighter counterparts.
Toyota pays for scheduled maintenance on the Venza for 2 years and 25000 miles. Toyota will pay for oil changes, lubrication and any other required maintenance. Buick only pays for the first scheduled maintenance visit on the Encore.
The battery on the Venza is in the trunk, which protects it from hot underhood temperatures that can degrade battery life. By keeping the Venza’s battery 20 to 30 degrees cooler, its life is increased by years. The Encore’s battery is in the hot engine compartment.
J.D. Power and Associates’ 2019 survey of the owners of three-year-old vehicles provides the long-term dependability statistics that show that Toyota vehicles are more reliable than Buick vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Toyota second in reliability, above the industry average. With 10 more problems per 100 vehicles, Buick is ranked fifth.
From surveys of all its subscribers, Consumer Reports’ December 2019 Auto Issue reports that Toyota vehicles are more reliable than Buick vehicles. Consumer Reports ranks Toyota third in reliability. Buick is ranked 18th.
The Venza’s 2.5 DOHC 4-cylinder hybrid produces 81 more horsepower (219 vs. 138) than the Encore’s 1.4 turbo 4-cylinder.
On the EPA test cycle the Venza CVT gets better fuel mileage than the Encore AWD (40 city/37 hwy vs. 24 city/29 hwy).
Regenerative brakes improve the Venza’s fuel efficiency by converting inertia back into energy instead of wasting it. The Encore doesn’t offer a regenerative braking system.
In heavy traffic or at stoplights the Venza’s engine automatically turns off when the vehicle is stopped, saving fuel and reducing pollution. The engine is automatically restarted when the driver gets ready to move again. (Start/Stop isn’t accounted in present EPA fuel mileage tests.) The Encore doesn’t offer an automatic engine start/stop system.
The Venza has a standard continuously variable transmission (CVT). With no “steps” between gears, it can keep the engine at the most efficient speed for fuel economy, or keep it at its peak horsepower indefinitely for maximum acceleration. The Encore doesn’t offer a CVT.
For better stopping power the Venza’s brake rotors are larger than those on the Encore:
For better traction, the Venza has larger tires than the Encore (225/60R18 vs. 215/55R18).
For better ride, handling and brake cooling the Venza XLE/Limited has standard 19-inch wheels. The Encore’s largest wheels are only 18-inches.
For superior ride and handling, the Toyota Venza has fully independent front and rear suspensions. An independent suspension allows the wheels to follow the road at the best angle for gripping the pavement, without compromising ride comfort. The Buick Encore has a rear torsion beam axle, with a semi-independent rear suspension.
The Venza has standard front and rear stabilizer bars, which help keep the Venza flat and controlled during cornering. The Encore’s suspension doesn’t offer a rear stabilizer bar.
For a smoother ride and more stable handling, the Venza’s wheelbase is 5.3 inches longer than on the Encore (105.9 inches vs. 100.6 inches).
For better handling and stability, the track (width between the wheels) on the Venza is 2.3 inches wider in the front and 3.1 inches wider in the rear than on the Encore.
For better maneuverability, the Venza LE’s turning circle is .6 feet tighter than the Encore’s (36.1 feet vs. 36.7 feet).
The front grille of the Venza uses electronically controlled shutters to close off airflow and reduce drag when less engine cooling is needed. This helps improve highway fuel economy. The Encore doesn’t offer active grille shutters.
The Venza has 5.5 cubic feet more passenger volume than the Encore (98.3 vs. 92.8).
The Venza has .1 inches more front legroom, 2.7 inches more front hip room, 3.2 inches more front shoulder room, .2 inches more rear headroom, 2 inches more rear legroom and 4.4 inches more rear shoulder room than the Encore.
For enhanced passenger comfort on long trips the Venza’s rear seats recline. The Encore’s rear seats don’t recline.
The Venza has a much larger cargo volume with its rear seat up than the Encore with its rear seat up (28.8 vs. 18.8 cubic feet). The Venza has a much larger cargo volume with its rear seat folded than the Encore with its rear seat folded (55.1 vs. 48.4 cubic feet).
An available locking center console keeps your small valuables safer in the Venza. The Encore doesn’t offer locking storage for small valuables.
To make loading and unloading groceries and cargo easier when your hands are full, the Venza’s power liftgate can be opened or closed just by kicking your foot under the back bumper, leaving your hands completely free. The Encore doesn’t offer a power or hands-free opening liftgate.
When two different drivers share the Venza XLE/Limited, the memory system makes it convenient for both. Each setting activates different, customized memories for the driver’s seat position and steering wheel position. The Encore doesn’t offer a memory system.
The Venza’s standard easy entry system raises the steering wheel and glides the driver’s seat back, making it easier for the driver to get in and out. The Encore doesn’t offer an easy entry system.
The Venza Limited offers an optional heads-up display that projects speed and other key instrumentation readouts in front of the driver’s line of sight, allowing drivers to view information without diverting their eyes from the road. The Encore doesn’t offer a heads-up display.
The Venza’s power parking brake sets with one touch and releases with one touch or automatically. The Encore has a lever-type parking brake that has to be strenuously raised to engage properly. It has to be lifted up more and a button depressed to release it.
The Venza’s front and rear power windows all open or close with one touch of the switches, making it more convenient at drive-up windows and toll booths, or when talking with someone outside of the car. The Encore’s passenger windows don’t close automatically.
If the windows are left open on the Venza the driver can close them all at the outside door handle. On a hot day the driver can lower the windows at the outside door handle or from a distance using the keyless remote. (This window function must be activated by your Toyota service department.) The driver of the Encore can only operate the windows from inside the vehicle, with the ignition on.
While driving with high beams on, sensitive light sensors standard on the Venza detect other vehicles which could be blinded and automatically switch to low beams. The Encore doesn’t offer automatic dimming high beams.
The Venza XLE/Limited’s standard rear view mirror has an automatic dimming feature. This mirror can be set to automatically darken quickly when headlights shine on it, keeping following vehicles from blinding or distracting the driver. The Encore doesn’t offer the luxury of an automatic dimming rear view mirror.
The Venza XLE/Limited has standard heated front seats, which keep the driver and front passenger extremely comfortable in the winter. Heated seats aren’t available in the Encore.
Optional air-conditioned seats in the Venza (except LE) keep the driver and front passenger comfortable and take the sting out of hot seats in Summer. The Encore doesn’t offer air-conditioned seats.
On extremely cold winter days, the Venza’s optional (except LE) heated steering wheel provides comfort, allowing the driver to steer safely and comfortably before the vehicle heater warms up. The Encore doesn’t offer a heated steering wheel.
The Venza’s standard dual zone air conditioning allows the driver and front passenger to choose two completely different temperatures so people with different temperature preferences won’t have to compromise. This makes both the driver and front passenger as comfortable as possible. The Encore doesn’t offer dual zone air conditioning.
The Venza’s standard automatic temperature control maintains the temperature you set, automatically controlling fan speed, vents and temperature to maintain a consistent, comfortable environment. The Encore doesn’t offer automatic air conditioning.
Both the Venza and the Encore offer rear vents. For greater rear passenger comfort, the Venza has standard rear air conditioning vents to keep rear occupants cool in summer or warm in winter. The Encore doesn’t offer rear air conditioning vents, only heat vents.
To keep a safe, consistent following distance, the Venza has a standard Dynamic Radar Cruise Control, which alters the speed of the vehicle without driver intervention. This allows the driver to use cruise control more safely without constantly having to disengage it when approaching slower traffic. The Encore doesn’t offer an adaptive cruise control.
To quickly and conveniently keep personal devices charged without cables tangling and wearing out, the Toyota Venza has a standard wireless phone charging system (Qi) in the center console. The Encore doesn’t offer wireless personal charging.
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